Mac Pro 1,1 vs the others?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by tr3lo9y, Dec 17, 2010.

  1. tr3lo9y macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2010
    #1
    Hello All,

    Firstly, I wanna say hello, I'm new to the forums but I have been reading everyone's posts and glad to see the amount of support you give one another so I joined! Looking forward to being part of the MacRumors crowd! :)

    So first question would be, how different is the first gen mac pro vs the newer models? Reason I ask is I'm getting one for $900 from a friend and am gonna upgrade the hell out of it. I wanna use it as the main server for the house and some Steam gaming since I hate the PC. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!!

    Thanks!
    Tr3L09y
     
  2. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

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    Battle Ground
    #2
    I bought a Mac Pro 1,1 a year and a half ago before really researching it and was really disappointed with the lack of upgradability.

    Reaslitically the upgrades you are going to want to do are hard drives, video cards and ram.

    Hard drives are fine, SATA is SATA and you won't have any issues upgrading these.

    Video cards are another story, because the original mac pro uses a 32-bit EFI the newer Nvidia graphics cards aren't supported. Although you can use the current ATI cards apple sells.

    RAM can be upgraded up to 32 GB. I would recommend OWC for Mac RAM but people also like Crucial. RAM can be much more expensive for the Mac Pro if you buy the recommended ECC ram. My main issue with the RAM in the Mac Pro 1,1 is that it's 667 mHz.

    Apple could easily update the EFI32 to EFI64 but being Apple they won't.
     
  3. pdechavez macrumors regular

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    Dec 26, 2007
    #3


    How bout the processors? I've read that I can upgrade to a 2006 model octo-core processors?
     
  4. PurpleLogix macrumors member

    PurpleLogix

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    #4
    Yes, CPU's can be upgraded to octocores, like mine has.
     
  5. pdechavez macrumors regular

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    Dec 26, 2007
    #5
    So what are all the options for the graphics cards in the Mac Pro 1,1?
     
  6. PurpleLogix macrumors member

    PurpleLogix

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  7. pdechavez macrumors regular

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    Dec 26, 2007
    #7
    How bout Nvidia cards?
     
  8. Floris macrumors 68020

    Floris

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    Sep 7, 2007
    Location:
    Netherlands
    #8
    How big of a difference is it really to go from 53xx xeon dual cores at 2,66 to octocores at 2.66 ?

    Code:
     Model Name:	Mac Pro
      Model Identifier:	MacPro1,1
      Processor Name:	Dual-Core Intel Xeon
      Processor Speed:	2.66 GHz
      Number Of Processors:	2
      Total Number Of Cores:	4
      L2 Cache (per processor):	4 MB
    Downside of the macpro 1,1 is that you can't play steam; counter strike source - it says the model isn't supported.
    It doesn't say because of the video card or whatever, it just says it doesn't. Which is odd, since crossover games plays it with the default card 7300 gt from nvidia just fine at 75fps in 32bit.
     
  9. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

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    #9
    I bet that cost more than the machines is worth though right?
     
  10. PurpleLogix macrumors member

    PurpleLogix

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    Sydney, Australia
  11. PurpleLogix macrumors member

    PurpleLogix

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    #11

    Not many. they are mostly 64efi. I guess you can look at some of the stuff over at netkas' forum.
     
  12. nerdo macrumors regular

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    Dec 18, 2010
    #12
    Recently upgrade my 1,1 to a 5,1 Mac Pro and the difference is huge, so much smother even though my old 1,1 was pimped to the max with 16GB memory, all the 2TB drives that could fit and a nice Ati 5770 card. They are sitting next to each other and I can tell you this: the 1,1 is slow and some stuff simply does not work as well as it does on the new one. The real difference is in the motherboard.

    the new Mac pro has 32GB of memory and had the same video card (now it was a NVidia Quadro 4000)

    But the real question is: is this worth spending another 3K for you? Maybr you should look into a Quad i7 iMax 27" because it will probably blow the MAc pro away in daily use.. lol You can never upgrade to any CUDA cards, thassall :p
     
  13. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

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    #13
    What procs did you use?
     
  14. pdechavez macrumors regular

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    Dec 26, 2007
    #14
    What do you mean steam isn't supported? Do you mean I cannot play TF2, CS Source at all within OSX? I just ordered Apples 5870... =(
     
  15. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

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    #15
    No the 7300 GT isn't supported for source games.
     
  16. dermeister macrumors 6502

    dermeister

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    Jan 19, 2003
    #16
    The downsides to the mp1,1 are:

    • Really expensive ram
    • Slow ram (667)
    • PCI-E 1.1 (no PCI-E 2.0)
    • EFI32 - Can't use NVIDIA cards (Apple won't upgrade to EFI64)
    • Installing Windows 7 x64 is a pain (no official Apple support)

    Nothing unsurmountable, but it isn't trivial.

    Basically if you have an mp1,1 Apple doesn't care about you.
     
  17. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

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    #17
    I don't really understand why Apple won't upgrade the EFI. Sure they want you to buy a new machine but you would think they would support their customers who spend the most money on Apple computers.
     
  18. pdechavez macrumors regular

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    Dec 26, 2007
    #18
    So are you saying that EFI is upgradeable? How?
     
  19. zachsilvey macrumors 6502

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    #19
    It could technically be done via firmware update. Think of the EFI as the BIOS. But Apple refuses to do so, hopefully for good reason.
     
  20. Mackilroy, Dec 18, 2010
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2010

    Mackilroy macrumors 68040

    Mackilroy

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2006
    #20
    • Pretty cheap, actually
    • Indeed it is
    • Not really a hindrance
    • Indeed
    • Nope. It was incredibly easy for me to install Win7 64 on my machine
     
  21. nerdo macrumors regular

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    Dec 18, 2010
    #21
    You can crunch numbers and throw nerdy numbers all day, but the truth is the ,1 has been out of date for years and no amount of RAM or videocard is going to get it "up there". In the end the real bottleneck wil be the logicboard. Sure people will throw numbers at you saying that is not an issue, but it is.

    It is an old beast, works well but it is nothing like the joy you get from working with a new 2010 MP. Or a quad i7 iMac :p

    Right now I feel I only wasted time and money on upgrading the 1,1. Can't imagine buying one 4 years late and trying to pimp it unless it was dirt cheap.. like 400$. Because you are going to spend another 1400$ on it.. and then you are still using a out of date machine.

    anyway, good luck to whomever wants to spend money on a Mac Pro it is always a hard choice .
     
  22. kellen macrumors 68020

    kellen

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    Seattle, WA
    #22
    For 900 it seems like a good price, if you can live with the limitations mentioned and it fits your needs.

    I would buy it if I had a monitor already and needed the HD space.

    How much ram is included? If enough to fit your needs now, sounds like a good deal.
     
  23. dermeister macrumors 6502

    dermeister

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    Jan 19, 2003
    #23
    • The ram is more expensive than RAM for the mp5,1. Obviously it's a relative question.
    • PCI-E 1.1 means you can't get full bandwidth with the best video cards (i.e. 5870), and you CERTAINLY can't get any good bandwidth with an SLI configuration since you could have to run both lanes in 8x PCI-E 1.1 mode. So if you care about gaming, it matters. Otherwise, you're right.
    • It's "easy" (unless you're a layman) but not supported. You have to burn a special Win7x64 DVD due to a boot problem. Mildly difficult. You have to trick the bootcamp installer to run. Easy enough. To get full SATA support (to run an HD faster than 100 MBps), you need to hax the HD boot sector and install drivers in a procedure that can easily screw your install. Very difficult. The end-user can't really be expected to do all this stuff.

    Overall I think it's worth it, as the current mps will be obsolete and abandoned by Apple soon enough. If the mp1,1 works with 10.7 Lion, it will have been an extremely long-lived machine. Apple's new light-speed mobos (I forget what the thing they're working on with Intel is called) will make all the PCI-E 2.0 or 3.0 mps obsolete.

    I think we have hit seriously diminishing returns with PCs for the past years. In this situation, the mp1,1 gets my vote.
     
  24. akadmon macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2006
    Location:
    New England
    #24
    I hate it when people are hating on my baby! :mad:

    Look, my MP 1,1 still runs circles around my daughter's 1 year old MBP. I've got two large non-glossy screens hooked up to it and could connect two more if wanted to -- try doing that with an iMac. With 12GB of RAM, I can run Fusion without worrying about mac apps grinding to a halt because of insufficient RAM allocation (and I keep at least a half dozen running while I'm doing Windows). I have plenty of cheap storage, including external eSata drives, and I can now add USB 3 drives if I so choose (good luck getting anything faster than FW800 on the iMac!). I have absolutely no issues with the 4870 video card, but then again I have no need or desire to render HD video or play the latest shooter game at 300 fps (30 fps is fast enough to fool me into believing I'm seeing totally fluid motion). If you're into games, go build yourself a PC gaming rig. If you make money in video, yeah, get yourself the newest 12 core MP. For anything else, MP 1,1 is more than good enough. Sure, I can afford to replace my MP 1,1 with the newest MP, but frankly I don't see or feel the need to, given what I use it for (multitasking, photography, running productivity apps under Fusion, playing an occasional game). I'd rather go get myself another lens.

    If I had only $2000 to spend, I'd buy a used MP 1,1, put in at least 8GB of RAM in it, a couple 2 TB drives, and I'd round it all out with a refurbished 16GB iPad for those times I feed like reading Macrumors on the toilet.
     
  25. Transporteur macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #25

    The technology you're referring too is called Light Peak, not light speed, and it's developed by Intel, not Apple.

    If and when we see Light Peak supported boards by Apple is still an unanswered question. The times it will make PCIe obsolete will be probably more than a decade away from now.
    The claimed speeds for the first release are 10Gb/s. PCIe (2.0) is already cabale of 64Gb/s! PCIe (3.0) even 128Gb/s
    Intel claims that LP will be capable of 100Gb/s by 2020, so a looooong time till PCIe will be replaced.
     

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